Born in Salamanca, Spain, in 1982, in his father’s painting studio, Ricardo was predestined and engaged in the artistic world since birth.
He grew up playing with brushes, colors and paintings. After working for some advertising agencies, Cavolo got a pair of work for Cirque du Soleil, giving him a verve to start working for himself, in his own art studio. In three years of his artistic independence, he illustrated many books, magazines, t-shirts, and designed tattoos and most recent, murals. At the same time, Ricardo is making personal projects for exhibitions all over the world.
Crucial moment in his artistic growth was the discovery of outsider, naïve art, which is now the main inspiration in his oeuvre.
Always working around portraits, even when he wants to speak about something more in general, Ricardo is astonished about each particular life, finding in it magic and unique stories.
‘Every portrait speaks about something big in life,’ the primal painter says, ‘love, madness, roots, bravery, misery, hope. A portrait can hold an entire universe in a single face.’
His series of portraits for a show named Life and Lives, display society’s outsiders – from artists and orphans to prisoners, feral children and slum kids, in order to tell multiple stories about their unusual, marginalized identities.
Another main theme and inspiration in Cavolo’s art are myths and legends from different cultures.
Amazed by these magic tales, he uses these stories to create a secret symbolism within his work, connecting primitive theories of origin of life with our modern age. Converting these ideas into graphic symbols, Ricardo observes that ‘we can be the most modern and technological version of a human being possible, but inside we are still primitive.’
'If there was one word to describe the work of Ricardo Cavolo it would have to be “fire,” the Spanish artist told us.'
Indeed, not only are there depictions of flames in Cavolo’s diverse range of artwork, but the self-taught creative always seems to bring the heat in any sort of endeavor he encounters. He has garnered worldwide acclaim for his mind-bending paintings, illustrations, and murals that cull medieval alongside traditional folk art references.
Moreover, key artistic influences also extend to his favorite fashion brands spanning Gucci and Prada alongside renowned musicians such as Kanye West and The Notorious B.I.G. In fact, Cavolo is perhaps most famously known for designing Kaytranada’s debut studio album, 99.9%.